Iowa in the Great War, IAGenWeb Special Project






A Narrative History of The People of Iowa


 EARL D. MCCLEAN, M. D. In the difficult field of general surgery Dr. Earl D. McClean, of Des Moines, has won a recognized position among his associates. For a time orthopedic surgery claimed his attention to the exclusion of other branches of his profession, but eventually he entered the broader field which has given him wider scope for the exhibition of his special abilities.

Doctor McClean was born at Union, Hardin County, Iowa, June 18, 1884, and is a son of Charles and Carmellia (Caster) McClean. The great-grandfather of Doctor McClean, John McClean, served a a drummer boy in the American forces during the War of 1812. Neil McClean, the grandfather of Earl D., was born in New York State, where he enlisted in a volunteer infantry regiment in the Union army, and served all through the war between the states. He then returned to New York, but in 1868 came to Iowa, where he spent the remainder of his life in agricultural pursuits.

Charles McClean was born in New York State and was still a youth when he accompanied the family to Iowa in 1868. Here he was reared to agricultural pursuits in Hardin County, where he spent the active years of his life in the cultivation of the soil. He developed a well cultivated and valuable property near Union, from which he and Mrs. McClean moved to Union in 1928 and are now residing in comfortable retirement. They are attendants of the Congregational Church, and Mr. McClean is a Republican in politics and a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. They were the parents of the following children: Prof. Clarence G., who took his theological course at Cleveland, graduated from Penn College and won the oratorical contest during his freshman year,
then held a pastorate while he was still a student, and following his graduation and a post-graduate course spent fifteen years in missionary work in the Philippines and Cuba and is now a professor at Whittier College, Whittier,
California; C. R., who died in 1921; Mrs. Pearl Glenney, who is residing on the old home farm near Union; and Dr. Earl D., of this review. The maternal grandfather of Earl D. McClean was John Caster, a native of Illinois, who came to Iowa at an early date and engaged in farming, but died when still a young man.

Earl D. McClean attended the public schools of Union, and after his graduation from high school entered the medical department of the University of Iowa, from which he was graduated in 1908, following which he took post-graduate work at Harvard. In 1909 he commenced the practice of his profession at Oskaloosa, Iowa, where he remained until the United Stares became involved in the great World war. As soon as he could arrange his affairs he enlisted in the Medical corps, July 14, 1917, and was sent to the Medical Officers Training Camp at Fort Riley, Kansas, where he spent six weeks. Following this he was transferred to Camp Pike, Arkansas, where he remained until the latter part of July, 1918, when he went overseas, being identified with Base Hospitals Nos.
88 and 69, in the surgical service. He won promotion from lieutenant to captain, and received his honorable discharge September 28, 1919. During his military service he was able to do post-graduate work at the Royal Army Medical College, England.

Following his relief from military duties Doctor McClean settled at Des Moines, where for a time he was engaged in orthopedic and general surgery, but now has no specialty, his practice, which is a large and representative one, covering the whole surgical field. Doctor McClean occupies offices in the Iowa Building and has a high standing in his profession. He is on the staffs of the Mercy and Methodist Hospitals, and belongs to the Polk County Medical Society, the Iowa State Medical Society, the Missouri Valley Medical Society and the American Medical Association. He likewise holds membership in the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the Woodmen of the World and the Pi Epsilon Rho fraternity. Politically he is a Republican, but not an office seeker.
He is likewise a charter member of the American Legion.

On January 1, 1909, Doctor McClean was united in marriage with Miss Mary Burns, who was born and reared at Chicago, Illinois, and they have one child; Ruth Mary, born October 26, 1920. Mrs. McClean is a member of the Catholic Church. She is an accomplished vocalist, and is well known through her frequent appearance in musical recitals in Chicago and throughout Iowa.


~ source: A Narrative History of The People of Iowa with SPECIAL TREATMENT OF THEIR CHIEF ENTERPRISES IN EDUCATION, RELIGION, VALOR, INDUSTRY, BUSINESS, ETC., by EDGAR RUBEY HARLAN, LL. B., A. M. Curator of the Historical, Memorial and Art Department of Iowa Volume IV THE AMERICAN HISTORICAL SOCIETY, Inc. Chicago and New York. 1931
~ transcribe by Debbie Clough Gerischer for the Great War